"But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do." - James 1:6-8
We throw around the word “determined” without sometimes really knowing what it means. It has nothing to do with emotions. You could not like something and still be determined to get it done. Determination has to do with a mind set. Specifically, to be single-minded.
I recently joined a gym class that is very rigorous, like a boot camp class. The instructor is energetic and at times she seems more enthusiastic about being there than her participants. I found my breakthrough one day while overhearing a new person complain every time the instructor pushed us. I was making every effort to block out their negative attitude. I decided from that moment on not to give myself a single chance to complain during class. Of course, I need to think about what I'm doing but I don't need to consult myself how I feel. If I do, my flesh will give me feedback like "slow down", "this is tiring", "can't wait for this to be over", etc. Instead I decided to react immediately to the instructor's every cue. If she says, "pace it up", I push. If she say, "move it", I go. If she asks "how's it going?", I give thumbs up. You get the idea. I don't wait for my mind to contemplate what I think about the task. I will find a way to do it. As a result, I have been able to successfully accomplish even the most difficult routines and have received positive feedback from the instructor on my progress. Progress is good but that just means the instructor will expect more from me next time.
As I mentioned, our mindset is so important. Make an effort to become more aware of your negative thoughts and try to stop them as quickly as possible with positive self-talk and action. I have found that gratitude is the quickest method. For example, it might begin for you the moment you hear the alarm in the morning. Instead of wishing it were a day you could sleep in, thank God for a new day. It may sound silly to you but remember: You can't expect to have a determined spirit with the big stuff if you can't develop it for the small stuff.
- In what areas do you need to work on negative self-talk?
- Would you say your attitude motivates or discourages those in your sphere of influence?
- What are some things you can start doing today to become more determined?
Philippians 4:8; Romans 12:2